Buying "Studio Ceramics"—that is, those vases, plates and bowls which were handmade in a small artist-run workshop—is an interesting endeavor. First of all, one almost always must buy with his eye and buy with his taste. Because the makers are usually a mystery, one needs to trust his senses when selecting such a piece. Attracted, as I am, to glazes, my evaluation of studio pottery always begins with the color and finish. I also look for tell-tale signs of handwork—like the spiraling finger marks that indicate a piece had been hand-thrown. Substantial weight is a favorite feature and I like to see exposed areas (usually on the bottom) which reveal a chunky, earthy stoneware clay.
The piece above, made somewhere in Europe in the 1960's, wears a sublime glazing of microcrystalline gunmetal and slate blue. The piece screams sophistication—small workshop artisanal sophistication. Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.
Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well! Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques (www.mahlaantiques.com) or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248
Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts"
Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"